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Environmental Engineering - Research Paper Example

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…………… …………… …………… …………… Environmental Engineering- Nanomaterial’s Contamination Since 2005 when monitoring for the presence of nanoparticles in consumer products and in environment had begun, a dramatic increase in products containing nanoparticles has been observed and based on nanotechnology hundreds of consumer products are present in market…
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Environmental Engineering
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Download file to see previous pages Additionally since 1990, the number of patents for nanoparticle products has doubled every two years (Chalew, and Schwab 2). The emergence of engineered nanoparticles have resulted a new class of environmental contaminant and a new field of study sometimes termed as Nanotxicology. Nanotxicology investigates the nanoparticles related concerns both on human health and environment (Haynes 9). In last couple of decades, though the nanotechnology greatly improves the efficiencies of many sectors of science and technology yet studies have shown that rapid increase in nanoparticle materials have potential health and environmental implications. They have considerable toxicological pollution impacts on environment particularly due to their uncertain shape, size, and chemical compositions (Zhang, et al. 1). The particular health concerns are about the use of nanoparticles based products like cosmetics form where nanoparticles free to react with people and environment. Unfortunately very limited research work is available in this regards. In view of available research information leading scientists and organization across the globe are calling for the regulation of nanoparticles in consumer goods until the longer-term impacts on human health and the environment are better understood (Livingstone 1). Currently there are no specific federal standards that regulate the maximum contamination level to food product including the drinking or ground water and only existing certain federal statutes are applied that monitor the maximum contamination of nanoparticle materials. Most of the existing nanoparticles containing cosmetics and drugs products fall under the regulations of Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA). Similarly Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) is used to regulate nanomaterial those are considered chemicals. It is believed that during all three phases’ i. e. production, usage, and disposal of a nanoparticles containing consumer product, nanoparticles are likely to enter surface waters. Highly sensitive instrumentation research reveals the presence of nanoparticles in surface and drinking water samples from yet the source of such particles are still unknown (Wigginton, et al., 1306). Although the probability of nanoparticles to go into surface waters, and subsequently drinking water sources, is high, yet the technology to investigate and separate the nanoparticles from ordinary drinking water through conventional water treatment processes such as coagulation, flocculation and sedimentation, is still at it infant stage. Few studies have done in this regards show that the removal of nanoparticles through conventional treatment is highly dependent on water characteristics such as pH, natural organic matter (NOM) content, and salt composition etc. These factors greatly influence the size, aggregation, dissolution, and stability of nanoparticles in the water. Though the study to probe the effect of ingested nanoparticles is still at its initial stages yet whatever research has been done in this regards through in vitro and in vivo experiments indicates that there are adverse health effects from exposure to nanoparticles. The concept of partitioning between living tissues is also applied to nanoparticles materials. Studies have shown that at the cellular level as nanoparticles accumulate, they may release ions that can directly impact ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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